• BREAKING NEWS ABC shows live and on-demand -- Download the WATCH ABC app!

Pepperdine president's son admits to threats

Christopher Benton, the son of Pepperdine University President Andrew Benton, is seen in a mugshot provided by the sheriff's department on Aug. 23, 2012.

September 7, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
The 27-year-old son of Pepperdine University President Andrew Benton pleaded no contest on Friday to making criminal threats and possession of a firearm.

Prosecutors say Christopher Andrew Benton admitted to threatening his father at the family home, which is located on the Malibu campus, on Aug. 22. He was arrested when he returned to campus the next day. Authorities also found a gun nearby that they believe was his, and ammunition was found in his car.

After the incident, Andrew Benton wrote a letter to the university to apologize.

"For about 14 years Debby and I have dealt with issues emerging from the presence of drugs in the life of our son, Chris, and those with whom he has chosen to associate," he wrote. "For the most part, this issue has been kept private as we have tried a number of treatment methods. We have not given up, but we have not been successful."

Andrew Benton went on to say that his son would not be allowed on campus again until the University Threat Assessment Team determined that it was appropriate for him to return.

"You have my personal apology for the impact this has had on our wonderful Pepperdine community," Andrew Benton wrote.

Christopher Benton, who has three prior felony convictions, was charged with five felony counts, including possession of a firearm by a narcotic addict. The three remaining counts are expected to be dismissed. He remains in police custody.

He is expected to get two years in state prison when he is sentenced on Sept. 21.

Load Comments